At an average cost of £5M each, well abandonment is the biggest single decommissioning cost that North Sea operators currently face. This is because current practices require a rig to plug and abandon a well. This has prompted the search for new “rigless” abandonment techniques to lower costs.
Aubin has released footage from a successful trial of their Underwater Lifting System (ULS) recently conducted at Aberdeen University’s OceanLab facility. Aubin has been engaged with the university in a two-year knowledge transfer partnership (KTP) funded by Innovate UK. The ULS is designed to allow ROVs and divers to move objects with ease using a patented, low density, incompressible liquid that when pumped renders objects neutrally buoyant.
Today Aubin has been showcasing its latest subsea lifting technology – the Underwater Lifting System (ULS) to industry leaders and Paul Wheelhouse, MSP - Minister for Business, Innovation & Energy. Paul Wheelhouse announced earlier today, that the Decommissioning Challenge Fund has awarded the Oil & Gas Technology Centre (OGTC) £1.9 million to invest in the National Decommissioning Centre of Excellence.
When you are responsible for any pipeline, the end goal is to transport the product from one end to another safely and effectively. It is therefore important to ensure that the pipeline is clear of debris that could affect the flow and transfer of your crude oil, natural gas or chemical, and most operators will want to do this with as low a risk and as efficiently as possible.